Readers' Forum - July 2007

From the July 2007 Actrix Online Informer

If you'd like to ask a question or request some help on any Actrix or Internet-related matter. Simply send me an e-mail with the word "Forum" in the subject line. I'll try and get an answer to you by return e-mail, and will also post the answer here for the benefit of others who may have a similar question or problem. By the same token, if you read something here and think you may have something to suggest, please feel more than free. Please also note that questions and answers may also turn up under the Helpful Tips section on the Actrix home page (www.actrix.co.nz).

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Joe writes: Your comments on saving e-mails interested me, at present I Save As to a file outside Outlook Express so that the saved e-mails do not clutter up Outlook Express. It works for me! but I would like to see other ideas..

Hi Joe, Thanks for mentioning this. Yes, clicking the Save As link under the file menu is a fine way to save occasional e-mails, and you do have the added advantage of browsing to save each one exactly where you want to. This will save the emails in .eml format (Outlook saves them in .msg format) though you may also have the option of saving them as .txt or .html files. The .eml can be easily opened again by simply browsing to them and double-clicking. When you do that, Outlook Express should simply fire itself up with your selected e-mail open and ready to read or reply to. It's a good method for occasional saves of necessary correspondence but could get pretty labour intensive if you have lots of e-mails to save.

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Ron writes: Good Evening Ed. I have heard that dialup is more secure than broadband (for banking etc ). As dialup uses the phone line, is it possible to have both dialup and broadband and use them both at once from the same phone line? I have used you service many years ( I think about 8 ) and am most happy with it.
Best regards, Ron

Hi Ron, I'm not so sure that dialup is any more secure for online banking than broadband. When it comes to online banking it's far more important that you use good passwords and don't respond to fake e-mails from purported banks than whether or not you use dialup or broadband. Also, the big threats to your passwords are Trojans or viruses that might log your key strokes and send what they capture home to their evil masters, and this a threat to any internet user, regardless of how they connect.

A firewall, such as the one that comes standard with Windows, will help protect against this. Banks encrypt the connection between you and their servers so that any information passed between you cannot be read by a third party, and this also applies regardless of your connection type.

In short, I wouldn't worry too much about whether you connect to the bank on dialup or on broadband, as long as you're engaging in safe computing in those other respects. That said, yes, ADSL splits your phone line and uses the top half (higher frequency) for the broadband internet and the bottom half for phone calls. Since a dialup connection is technically a phone call, you could do both at the same time if you had broadband.
I hope that helps.